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October 28, 2010

Making Question Routing Even Smarter with Social

We’re in the midst of rolling out some new features on Ask.com and wanted to provide a quick update.

Growing our community the right way is key and adding value (not just bells and whistles) is critical. As such, injecting a social layer to Ask.com in places where it makes the Q&A experience better is a key emphasis for us. Over the past couple of months, we have implemented social functionality across the site to accomplish this, including being a launch partner for the Tweet button, allowing  users to “follow” people who consistently provide great answers, and providing more opportunities for sharing answers across an individual’s social network.

But tying into social platforms can do more than just make it easy to share content and invite friends. With user permission, we can also pull in profile information from other networks to help us understand knowledge areas and expertise. This helps us route questions more intelligently, which also improves our users’ experience.

Soon, we will roll out a feature that will do just that. Ask.com users will be provided the option to import profile data – interests, places traveled, work history and experience, and so on -- from Facebook and LinkedIn. We think LinkedIn is especially relevant given the rich amount of work-related expertise (say you’re a car mechanic or a search marketing whiz) we can glean from that platform.

So, what’s the latest in a nutshell?  A quick look below – Forbes’ Bruce Upbin provides more context in his blog, which you can find here.

    - Universal log in: You can now log into Ask.com using Facebook or Linked credentials.

    - As of this week, you can now easliy invite your Facebook and LinkedIn friends into the Ask.com Q&A experience.

    -The ability to import and route questions based on Facebook and LinkedIn profile data coming next month.

We’re excited about the progress but want to know what you think. What social features or functionality would make your Q&A experience on Ask.com better? If you’re already a registered member of our Q&A beta, please visit here to share your feedback (must be logged in to view). If you're not in the beta but would like to be, request an invite now.

Jason Rupp, Director of Product Management & Amruta Phanse, Developer

Posted by Ask.com Blog | Permalink


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